Making An Album Cover

So you’ve spent months (or years) working on your album, poured your heart and soul into it, and now you’re ready to put your feet up and watch the kudos roll in. But before that happens – even in this digital age – you’ll need to put together an album cover to give your work a public face…

Working Your Image

Nine Reasons Album Cover
Even if your music is ultimately the most important thing, if you want to get some exposure on music blogs (or indeed print publications), it’s very helpful to have some images to provide to the prospective reviewer – the easier you make their job, the more likely they are to put an article out.

Cover artwork is an important part of the overall album package; often, people will see your album cover before they hear any of your songs, and it can communicate a lot about what you’re doing, and how you’re doing it.

Face The Sleeve

A professional-looking album cover is important; not just to create a good candidate for sleevefacing (although that is probably a good promotional angle), but to create a first impression indicating the music behind it is also professional.

Shadow Of A Sprout Album Cover

Brian Hazard recently tried out the crowdsourcing design site 99designs to get an album cover for “A Slip Of The Finger”.

The basic idea is that you pitch a request to the marketplace, stating what you want and what you’re willing to pay. Various designers who are interested then submit their work, and you get to choose which one(s) you want to pay for.

This seems like a great model from the employer’s point of view, although as Brian remarked, you can end up getting sucked into lots of email exchanges with lots of different designers. However, if you’re not graphically inclined yourself, this could be a good way to source some quality artwork for a lot less than you would need to pay a traditional design company.

Self Image

Personally, though not a designer, I actually enjoy creating album artwork, and find it a pleasurable part of the whole album creation process. Even taking a photograph and overlaying a logo on it can provide a passable cover; over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be putting together the album art for my new album “A Stillness Building”… in the meantime, to whet your appetite, here’s a track from the album:

Marshmallows (Canabrism – A Stillness Building, 2011) by podcomplex


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